Meet the Planning Committee
Soha Hmaidan is the Associate Vice President for Advancement Services and Special Events at the American University of Beirut (AUB) with strategic responsibility for gifts, records and data, prospect research and management, stewardship, campaign reporting, advancement communications, budget, events and protocol. With over 25 years of higher education experience, Soha has secured leadership gifts in support of AUB’s mission and vision and served as Interim AVP for Communications.
Soha holds a BBA and MBA from AUB and is a Certified Professional in HR and compensation. Soha has been actively engaged in the CASE Advancement Conference in Middle East (MEAC) and has spoken at various CASE conferences in Dubai, Hong Kong and at the Association for Advancement Services Professionals. She currently chairs the CASE MEAC 2020.
Salma Dannawi Oueida is Associate Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations at the American University of Beirut (AUB). She brings a wealth of experience to her current position having worked at AUB for more than 17 years. During this time, she has fundraised for AUB’s seven faculties and the medical centre, managed the university's relationship with more than 70,000 alumni and 63 chapters around the world, and worked closely with some of AUB's most successful volunteer groups to develop valuable and mutually rewarding partnerships. Prior to joining AUB, Salma, who has a Bachelor of Electrical and Communication Engineering from AUB, worked in marketing and business development in several leading private sector firms.
John D. Pine
John D. Pine is the Director of Alumni Relations & Annual Giving at NYU Abu Dhabi, where he works to engage the unique and talented population of NYUAD alumni all over the world. Prior to joining the team at NYUAD, he served as the Director of Outreach & Alumni Programs for NYU (New York), managed Alumni Relations for the Goizueta Business School at Emory University in Atlanta, GA and at Point Park University in Pittsburgh, PA. John is a native Bostonian who received his Bachelor of Arts from Bridgewater State College (University) and his Master of Education from the University of Georgia.
Walid A. Katergi, CFRE
Walid A. Katergi joined the Office of Development at the American University of Beirut in 2003. He currently serves as Associate Vice President for Development. He earned his CFRE (Certified Fund Raising Executive) in December 2012 - the first to obtain such a certification in the Arab World.
Walid fundraises for all faculties of the American University of Beirut (www.aub.edu.lb), a 151 year old prestigious American institution of higher learning in Beirut, Lebanon that includes a 300-bed quaternary care Medical Center. In addition, he manages a team of fundraisers based in Lebanon, and works closely with the team in New York that fundraises in the Americas.
Syed Bashir is an experienced Advancement and Fundraising professional with over 16 years of experience. His expertise includes setting up Advancement Services and implementing best practices in Database Management, Prospect Research and Gift Processing. Syed’s portfolio includes working through two successful Capital Campaigns, Database Migration and the implementation of a Data Governance Committee at the University of Central Florida - the largest public university in the US.
Having lived in various countries, Syed has a strong understanding of the cultural and social perspectives of the philanthropic practices both in the Middle East and the US. Since 2013, Syed has been part of the University Development team at the prestigious King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), where he has headed multiple roles ranging from Fundraising to Advancement Operations.
Gabriel Abiad is the Assistant Vice President for Strategic Communications at the Lebanese American University (LAU) in Lebanon. He is a seasoned communications professional with decades of experience in the corporate and public sectors, nationally and internationally. Gabriel served as strategic planner and then Associate General Manager at FP7 (part of McCann Worldgroup), one of Lebanon's leading advertising agencies, and as marketing director for McDonald's Lebanon. He has developed national campaigns for governments in Canada, working for communications agencies in Ottawa. He has taught marketing strategy at LAU. Gabriel holds a Graduate Diploma in Education from Concordia University, an MBA and a BS in Liberal Arts from LAU.
Dalia Abubakr is the Senior Director of Digital Communications at the American University in Cairo (AUC). Joining AUC in 2009, she managed three revamp projects for the University website. She has more than 20 years’ experience in web communications, with special focus on usability, web architecture, analytics and optimisation. Her communications experience also includes strategic planning for content marketing and web content writing.
Dalia earned her bachelor's degree in English language with high honours. She pursued her post-graduate studies in translation. She has international exposure, through attending number of international workshops in areas of writing for the web, search engine optimisation and digital marketing. She earned a graduate diploma in Arabic and Islamic Civilisation at AUC. She has also achieved a stellar score at the CASE Advancement Conference in Middle East 2018.